Thursday, November 7, 2013

November already?!?

I can’t believe it’s already November.

The past 10 months went by so quickly but have been amazing. 

Here’s are some of the highlights from my 2013….
-Finished the Culinary Arts certificate with George Brown College
-Started the Baking Arts certificate with George Brown College
-Had a minor health scare that turned out to be nothing…yay!
-Traveled to Mexico and got Salmonella poisoning (well, maybe that wasn't so amazing…but what doesn't kill you... right?)
-Traveled around Europe for 3 ½ weeks, which included a wedding at a French Chateau and a trip to Munich for Oktoberfest (so much fun!)
-Got engaged in the most perfect way on a bridge in Paris

With all of the above, I've neglected to write about food, which I love to do.  So I thought I’d give it another go….

*Stay tuned* for a review of the Spanish Regional Cooking class that I took through George Brown College….

Happy Cooking!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Billionaire's Bacon

Have I got a recipe for you….something to start off 2013 right…..Billionaire’s Bacon

If I wasn't addicted to bacon before, I am totally and completely 100% addicted now (and yes, I am going to my Physician in a couple of months to get my cholesterol levels checked).

There is a reason it’s called ‘Billionaires Bacon’…It’s bacon-y, brown sugar-y gold .  GOLD!

It’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack…birthday/Christmas presents…..the big game.....bribing your boss for a raise (yes, I dare say it’s that good).  And it’s super simple to make. 

Couple of things…
-Get a medium-thickness bacon for this recipe….you don’t need a thick thick cut (yes, I used the word ‘thick’ twice), but the thin stuff will melt away and you’ll end up with brown sugar jerky.  Something in-between the thick and thin should work.
-Maple or smoke flavour (natural or otherwise) bacon makes the Billionaire's bacon better. 

Friday, January 4, 2013

Happy 2013!

So I guess it’s time for another ‘holy blog delay, Batman!’ 
The past few months have been crazy.  I’m not sure how it’s already 2013 (I really only just got used to writing 2012)….

This post celebrates the launch of the redesigned ‘A Culinary Education’ blog - thanks to Christine over @ Smitten Blog Designs.  I had a lot of fun with the redesign process.  She did a wonderful job with the little information that I gave her to go on (I told her that I wanted it to be simple, yet whimsical).   Somehow, she made the picture in my head come to life on the screen - it is simply perfect!   

Since it’s a new year, it’s time to get back to blogging.  Expect a beef stew recipe in the near future – perfect for a cold winter day. 

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season.  It’s a gloomy grey day here in Toronto – which is not helping with the ‘post-holiday’ blues - so here’s a picture of my Christmas tree (looking at it makes me feel warm and cozy).

Happy Cooking!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Food Adventures: Growing Hot Peppers....

Trinidad Scorpion Pepper.....apparently this one is around 1.5 million on the Scoville scale - (it's like the Richter scale, but for peppers) ....
Earlier this year, on a chilly winters day (January 2012), in the Great White North (…Toronto), I set a stack of pepper seeds into little pots with soil, added some water, covered them with plastic, and gave them my blessing to germinate - and fulfill their destiny of becoming hot hot hot peppers. (… was less of a ‘blessing’, and more of me just saying ‘grow dammit!’).

8 months on….many moons spent transplanting and fertilizing (and fertilizing….and fertilizing), combined with the very humid summer we’ve had here in Southern Ontario, I am proud to say that I have me some peppers!

During the germination process, I found that it was hard to tell the difference between the peppers once the seedlings started to sprout – so I spent some time labeling my pepper plant pots.  Somehow in all of my organization, it didn’t occur to me to use waterproof labels (whoops) so the few downpours that we have had this summer have pretty much washed out my labeling system – and now it’s a bit of a guessing game until the peppers have ripened up.  I know for sure that I have somewhere between 6-8 different varieties of peppers…..Instead of looking at this as a mistake, I choose to look at this as a ‘fun surprise’ in a few weeks time. 

I thought I’d share some pictures of the peppers as they are developing…
(just as a point of reference, the peppers used to make Tabasco sauce rate between 30,000 and 50,000 on the Scoville scale)....

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Food Adventures: The Canadian National Exhibition, 2012

The Canadian National Exhibition (a.k.a. The CNE or The Ex) comes to Toronto for the last 3 weeks of August every year.  Basically it’s a giant fair (it's also a signal that summer is coming to an end…and although this is a sad thought, it also means that I am all that much closer to Starbucks bringing back their Pumpkin Spiced Lattes!).

I’ve been going every year since before I can remember.  The CNE has everything from carnival rides to farm animals,  a world bazaar where you can buy goods from Russia to Brazil and even a building (stadium) reserved for horse shows  (where I saw the most adorable miniature horse show this year…).  It also features an entire warehouse-sized building completely devoted to food, where culinary experiences from deep fried butter to vegan delicacies (and everything in between) is available. 

This is one of a handful of days in the year where the ‘everything in moderation’ policy I try to follow when it comes to food is thrown (like a quarterback) out the window - and I go in search of all things wacky and deep fried. 

The variety of food this year at The Ex did not disappoint.  I thought I might share some of the food adventures that I had…..(I will try to do them justice - but really words can’t describe how awesome they were….!)

Red Velvet Pancakes Stuffed with Pulled Pork

This one still makes me laugh.  (in the ‘ahaha….i can’t believe someone thought of this, and that I ate it’ way). 

The red velvet pancakes were amazing (I’m totally making these at home one day). 

The pulled pork was sweeter (almost like maple syrup) then what I am used to – I think that is how these two actually went well together (don’t laugh…it really was pretty good!).